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Outdoors

  • Colorful wildflowers highlight glorious June

     

    As the song says, “June is bustin’ out all over,” and as usual, it is a glorious month. I believe it to be the most beautiful month of the year.

     

  • Groups teach Watershed 101 to educate community

    By Devan Filchak

    For the Courier

    Ten local residents learned about ways to preserve and protect the Bear Creek Watershed in a course offered by the Evergreen Metro District and the watershed association.

    The class, at the Evergreen Metro District facility on Stagecoach Drive, covered a variety of topics, including hydrology of Bear Creek, pollution, wildlife impacts and potential citizen monitoring.

    In the past, Evergreen High students took the class and then embarked on a beautification project at the school.

  • Bird sightings enhance a simple outdoor chore

    The old adage “Be careful what you wish for because you just might get it,” came to mind today when the spring weather I have been wishing for came with some gusty winds with temperatures in the 80s. That’s not spring; it’s even warmer than most of our summer weather. I was out cleaning up the yard a bit and sweeping the patio, and I thought I would melt in the process.

  • Spring’s arrival brings new growth to aspen, alder trees

    It is so nice to have some warm spring days, and now we are promised summer temperatures this week. Just to go out in my yard and see green fields and robins looking for worms, and hear green-tailed towhees and house wrens singing is a tonic for my winter-shriveled soul.

  • Hummingbird feeders need meticulous care

    Once more we have snow in May. This is a bit disturbing because we have just had some fine spring weather in April, and this seems like we are going backward. We don’t really want to see winter return, but it is not unusual. All of the ice was off Evergreen Lake by April 30.

  • Confounding phalaropes are shorebirds that act like ducks

    In last week’s article, I mentioned that many people had reported seeing phalaropes on Buchanan Pond on Sunday, April 21. Since then, I have had many inquiries about these birds such as: “What are they?” “Why haven’t we ever seen one?” “Where are they found?”

  • From the sounds of it, squirrels make their presence known

    During the past week, two different people requested information about the “baby” squirrels they have been seeing in their yard. From their description, I believe they have been seeing western red squirrels.

  • Migrant birds, including fox sparrows, return to area in April

    It is late at night as I try to write this. I must try to get this article finished so the good people at the newspaper can put it in the next issue. This has been a strange week with weather warmer than usual, mostly cloudy, spring-like days and clear nights with gillions of stars.

  • Elusive Townsend’s solitaires guard their juniper berry stash

    We moved into this house on April 19, 1965. That’s nearly 48 years ago, but many of you may recall the article I wrote about trying to find a pygmy owl that we heard calling that first night.

    Unfortunately, I do not hear pygmy owls calling as much as I used to. Their call is much more often heard than the owls are seen, for these tiny owls can disappear in a clump of pine needles or other foliage, and they are ventriloquists. They are not where you think they are.

  • Mourning doves make an early appearance at feeder

    On Friday, March 8, all the weathermen were forecasting another severe snow. By Saturday evening, they had been proven to be right with another foot of snow on the patio picnic table. On Friday, I was having lunch where I could watch the birds at the feeder. It was a busy sight with all of the winter moochers trying to fill up before the snow came. There was nothing new or especially interesting to be seen, but when I moved closer to the window to see if there was anything on the ground under the feeders, there was a sudden explosion of flight as two mourning doves took off.